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Pet Parents, Be Prepared! Cold Weather Safety Tips for Four-Legged Friends

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As we continue to experience another frigid winter, the Humane Society of Missouri and it's Animal Medical Center of Mid-America are sharing tips to make sure pet parents are prepared to keep their animals safe! It’s tempting to think your pet’s fur will keep them warm while they’re outside, but remember – if it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for your pet. The Humane Society of Missouri urges all pet owners to keep safety top of mind this winter with our lifesaving motto: Under 35, Bring Pets Inside!

Throughout winter, remember these six tips to keep pets healthy, happy, and protected from cold temperatures.

  1. Bring pets inside: Just like people, cats and dogs are susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite and should not be left outside in the cold for prolonged periods of time.
  2. Provide a cozy space: Any outdoor animal requires a well-insulated, draft-free, appropriately sized doghouse with a sturdy, flexible covering to protect against icy winds. Do not use blankets or towels inside the doghouse because they will freeze. Instead use straw to insulate it.
  3. Press “paws” on pet injuries: Check your animal’s paws frequently for signs of cold-weather damage, such as a cracked paw pad or bleeding. Promptly remove any ice melt from your pet's paws and fur.
  4. Layer up your pup: If your dog has a thinner coat or seems bothered by cooler temperatures, consider a sweater or a dog coat.
  5. Prevent poisoning: Make sure to clean up any antifreeze spills or buildup quickly as it is poisonous and can cause serious health issues.
  6. Schedule a winter wellness exam: If your pet has not visited the veterinarian for his or her routine wellness exam lately, now is the perfect opportunity.

To report an animal in distress, call the Humane Society of Missouri Animal Cruelty Hotline at (314) 647-4400.

The Animal Medical Center of Mid-America has veterinarians at two locations that can answer questions about your pet’s health. Call 314-951-1534 or click here to request an appointment online.